0925-20 NY Times Crossword 25 Sep 20, Friday

Constructed by: Rachel Fabi
Edited by: Will Shortz

Today’s Theme: None

Bill’s time: 15m 51s

Bill’s errors: 0

Today’s Wiki-est Amazonian Googlies

Across

1 The “stuf” in Double Stuf Oreos : CREME

Double Stuf Oreos were introduced in 1975, and have twice the normal amount of white cream filling as the original cookie. Nabisco really went big in 2013, introducing the Mega Stuf Oreo that has even more white cream filling.

6 Keeps track of a count, maybe : UMPS

That would be baseball.

10 Seoul music : K-POP

K-pop (Korean pop) is a genre of music from South Korea that emerged in the early nineties. It’s a bit beyond me …

Seoul is the capital city of South Korea. The Seoul National Capital Area is home to over 25 million people and is the second largest metropolitan area in the world, second only to Tokyo, Japan.

14 Balloon material : LATEX

Latex is a naturally occurring polymer made by some plants, that can also be made synthetically. About one in ten of the flowering plants in the world make the milky fluid called latex. It serves as a defense against insects and is exuded when a plant is injured or attacked by insects. Latex is collected commercially and is the source of natural rubber, which can be used to make things such as gloves, condoms and balloons.

15 Deal breaker? : NARC

“Narc” and “narco” are slang terms describing a law enforcement officer who tracks down criminals associated with illegal drugs. Both words are short for “narcotics officer”. Narcs might work for the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA).

17 High anxiety? : ACROPHOBIA

Our prefix “acro-” comes from the Greek “akros” meaning “at the top”. Examples are “acrophobia” (fear of heights) and “Acropolis” (“city at the top”).

26 Local boundaries? : ELS

There is a letter L (el) at each end of the word “local”.

31 Basketball highlight, informally : OOP

An alley-oop is a play in basketball in which one player lobs the ball close to the basket for a teammate who usually scores with a slam dunk.

32 Sets to zero, in a way : TARES

Tare is the weight of a container that is deducted from the gross weight to determine the net weight, the weight of the container’s contents.

34 “Star Wars” spinoff set five years after Emperor Palpatine’s fall : THE MANDALORIAN

Palpatine is the Dark Lord of the Sith in the “Star Wars” universe. He is also known as “Darth Sidious” and “the Emperor”. In most of the films in the series, Palpatine is played by Scottish actor Ian McDiarmid. In “The Empire Strikes Back”, he was actually played by a woman. Palpatine was portrayed physically by the wife of special makeup effects artist Rick Baker, and voiced by New Zealand actor Clive Revill.

38 Force feed : RATIONS

The Meal, Ready-to-Eat (MRE) comes in a lightweight package that’s easy to tote around. The MRE replaced the more cumbersome Meal, Combat, Individual (MCI) in 1981, a meal-in-a-can. In turn, the MCI had replaced the C-ration in 1958, a less sophisticated meal-in-a-can with a more limited choice.

45 Mythological hunter turned into a stag : ACTAEON

The hunter of Greek mythology named Actaeon was trained by the centaur Chiron, as was Achilles.

48 Infantile affliction : COLIC

Baby colic is a condition in which a baby cries for no apparent reason and for extended periods. At least one study has shown that breastfed babies are about half as likely to suffer from colic.

57 Concept in artificial intelligence : TURING TEST

Alan Turing created the Turing test in 1950 as a way of checking a machine’s ability to exhibit intelligent behavior indistinguishable from a human. The essence of the test is an evaluation of a text conversation between machine and human. The evaluation is carried out by someone who only knows that one of the conversants is a machine, but not which one is which.

Alan Turing was an English mathematician. He was well-respected for his code-breaking work during WWII at Bletchley Park in England. However, despite his contributions to cracking the German Enigma code and other crucial work, Turing was prosecuted for homosexuality in 1952. He agreed to chemical castration, treatment with female hormones, and then two years later he committed suicide by taking cyanide. Turing’s life story is told in the 2014 film “The Imitation Game” with Benedict Cumberbatch playing the lead. I thoroughly enjoyed that film …

61 “Chariots of Fire” filming locale : ETON

“Chariots of Fire” is British film released in 1981. The movie is based on the true story of two athletes training for and participating in the shorter running events in the 1924 Paris Olympics.

62 Half-bird, half-woman creature : HARPY

In Greek mythology, a harpy was a winged spirit noted for stealing food from a king called Phineus. Phineas angered the god Zeus and so was punished by being exiled to an island with a buffet of food that he could never eat. Every time he tried to eat, harpies would arrive and steal the food. We use the term today for a shrewish woman or a predatory person.

63 ___ Choice Awards : TEEN

Fox television network’s Teen Choice Awards were created in 1999 to cater for the teen demographic, along the lines of the existing Nickelodeon Kids’ Choice Awards. Sadly, the Teen Choice Awards have been plagued with controversy, with apparently well-founded claims that winners have been selected and sometimes notified even before voting has closed.

65 Collide into the side of : T-BONE

A broadside collision between two cars is also known as a right-angle or t-bone collision. The side of one vehicle is impacted by the front of another, often leaving the vehicles locked in a T-formation.

Down

3 Verb with a circumflex : ETRE

A circumflex is a diacritic mark used routinely in some languages, such as French. For example, there’s a circumflex over the first “e” in “être”, the French for “to be”.

5 Avant-garde : EXPERIMENTAL

Someone or something described as avant-garde is especially innovative. “Avant-garde” is French for “advance guard”.

6 Card game shout : UNO!

UNO is a card game that was developed in the early seventies and that has been sold by Mattel since 1992. UNO falls into the shedding family of card games, meaning that the goal is to get rid of all your cards while preventing opponents from doing the same.

7 Berlioz’s “Queen ___” Scherzo : MAB

Hector Berlioz was a French composer active in the Romantic period. Berlioz’s most famous work is probably his “Symphonie fantastique”.

8 N.Y.C. event on the last Sunday in June : PRIDE PARADE

The first gay pride parades were held all on the same weekend in 1970, in New York City, Los Angeles and San Francisco.

9 Teatro alla ___ : SCALA

La Scala Opera House opened in 1778. It was built on the site of the church of Santa Maria della Scala, which gave the theater its Italian name “Teatro alla Scala”.

10 Kardashian family member : KRIS

Kris Kardashian is the matriarch of the Kardashian clan. She was married to the lawyer Robert Kardashian who was one of O. J. Simpson’s lawyers in his 1995 murder trial. The couple divorced in 1990 and Kris then married the celebrated decathlete from the 1976 Olympic Games, Bruce Jenner. That marriage ended in divorce as well, in 2015.

12 Monthly releases of a sort : OVA

The Fallopian tubes leading from the ovaries of female mammals in the uterus. The tubes are named for the 16th-century Italian anatomist Gabriello Fallopio, who was the first to describe them.

13 Hymnbook holder : PEW

A pew is a bench in a church, one usually with a high back. The original pews were raised and sometimes enclosed seats in the church used by women and important men or families. “Pew” comes from the Old French “puie” meaning “balcony, elevation”.

28 Some sensitive info, for short : SSNS

Social Security number (SSN)

29 60 : THREE SCORE

Our verb “to score” meaning “to tally”, comes from the Old Norse “skor”, which is a “mark, notch”. It is likely that items such as livestock were counted by placing a notch in a stick for each set of twenty, hence our use of the noun “score” to mean “twenty”.

30 What Ralph Nader did in 2000, 2004 and 2008 : RERAN

Ralph Nader has run as a third-party candidate for the office of President of the United States four times now, in every election from 1996 to 2008. Nader’s name was first first linked with the presidential race in 1971, when the famous Dr. Benjamin Spock offered to stand aside as candidate in the 1972 race if Nader would agree to run, but he declined.

33 Passionate, confident sort, they say : ARIES

Aries the Ram is the first astrological sign in the Zodiac, and is named after the constellation. Your birth sign is Aries if you were born between March 21 and April 20, but if you are an Aries you would know that! “Aries” is the Latin word for “ram”.

34 Actor Stanley : TUCCI

Stanley Tucci is a UK-based, American actor. Of his many fine performances, my favorite is in 2009’s “Julie & Julia” in which he plays the husband of celebrity chef Julia Child. Tucci is quite the cook himself in real life and released “The Tucci Cookbook” in 2012. He is also a co-owner of the Finch Tavern restaurant in Croton Falls, New York.

40 Bio class subject : RNA

Ribonucleic acid (RNA) is an essential catalyst in the manufacture of proteins in the body. The genetic code in DNA determines the sequence of amino acids that make up each protein. That sequence is read in DNA by messenger RNA, and amino acids are delivered for protein manufacture in the correct sequence by transfer RNA. The amino acids are then formed into proteins by ribosomal RNA. An added complication is that small changes in the sequence of amino acids specified by DNA sometimes takes place in a process known as RNA editing. This RNA editing occurs after the nucleotide sequence has been transcribed from DNA, but before it is translated into protein.

47 Sister channel of HGTV : OWN

Oprah Winfrey Network (OWN)

52 Sub : HERO

A hero is a submarine sandwich. The hero originated in New York City in the 1800s among Italian immigrants who wanted an Italian sandwich that reminded them of home. The name “hero” was coined in the 1930s, supposedly by a food critic in the “New York Herald Tribune” when he wrote that “one had to be a hero” to finish the gigantic sandwich. Hero is a prevalent term to this day in New York City, reserved for a submarine sandwich with an Italian flavor.

53 “Fantasy Focus” podcast airer : ESPN

The initialism “ESPN” stands for Entertainment Sports Programming Network. ESPN is a cable network that broadcasts sports programming 24 hours a day, and was launched back in 1979. ESPN has a lot of ardent fans. Several parents have named their children Espn (usually pronounced “Espen”) in honor of the network.

54 Lump near a lash : STYE

A stye is a bacterial infection of the sebaceous glands at the base of the eyelashes, and is also known as a hordeolum.

56 The smallest one is called a minimus : TOE

A “minimus” (plural (minimi”) is a little toe or a little finger.

58 Who joins Gryffindor’s Quidditch team in “Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix” : RON

Quidditch is a game that is famously played in the “Harry Potter” series of books and films. The game is contested by two teams of seven wizards or witches flying on broomsticks. There are four animated balls and six ring-shaped goals floating in mid-air. One of the balls is the Golden Snitch, and one of the players is the Seeker. It is the Seeker’s sole purpose to capture the Golden Snitch and thereby win the game.

Complete List of Clues/Answers

Across

1 The “stuf” in Double Stuf Oreos : CREME
6 Keeps track of a count, maybe : UMPS
10 Seoul music : K-POP
14 Balloon material : LATEX
15 Deal breaker? : NARC
16 Wander : ROVE
17 High anxiety? : ACROPHOBIA
19 “You don’t need to tell me what happened” : I SAW
20 Junior : PEEWEE
21 Lowest rating in showbiz’s Ulmer Scale : D-LIST
23 Kind of paste in East Asian cuisine : RED BEAN
26 Local boundaries? : ELS
29 Prefix with saccharide or glyceride : TRI-
31 Basketball highlight, informally : OOP
32 Sets to zero, in a way : TARES
34 “Star Wars” spinoff set five years after Emperor Palpatine’s fall : THE MANDALORIAN
37 It’s difficult to go against : CURRENT
38 Force feed : RATIONS
39 Ones diving right into their work? : OCEANOGRAPHERS
41 Perfume : SCENT
42 Rump : END
43 Shape of some hooks : ESS
44 “___ but a scratch!” : ‘TIS
45 Mythological hunter turned into a stag : ACTAEON
48 Infantile affliction : COLIC
50 Dreams : WISHES
55 Subject of J. J. Thomson’s “plum pudding” model : ATOM
57 Concept in artificial intelligence : TURING TEST
60 Scrutinize, with “over” : PORE …
61 “Chariots of Fire” filming locale : ETON
62 Half-bird, half-woman creature : HARPY
63 ___ Choice Awards : TEEN
64 Spots in which to lie low : DENS
65 Collide into the side of : T-BONE

Down

1 Keep the beat, in a way : CLAP
2 Tear : RACE
3 Verb with a circumflex : ETRE
4 [More tuna, please!] : [MEOW!]
5 Avant-garde : EXPERIMENTAL
6 Card game shout : UNO!
7 Berlioz’s “Queen ___” Scherzo : MAB
8 N.Y.C. event on the last Sunday in June : PRIDE PARADE
9 Teatro alla ___ : SCALA
10 Kardashian family member : KRIS
11 Rumps : POSTERIORS
12 Monthly releases of a sort : OVA
13 Hymnbook holder : PEW
18 Giggle bit : HEE
22 How a mysterious figure may disappear : INTO THE NIGHT
24 “Be serious!” : DON’T GET CUTE!
25 Shape, informally : BOD
27 Is biased : LEANS
28 Some sensitive info, for short : SSNS
29 60 : THREE SCORE
30 What Ralph Nader did in 2000, 2004 and 2008 : RERAN
33 Passionate, confident sort, they say : ARIES
34 Actor Stanley : TUCCI
35 “It’s ___ from me” : A NO
36 Something you can’t have while standing up : LAP
37 “It’ll ___ you” : COST
40 Bio class subject : RNA
46 Quoted : CITED
47 Sister channel of HGTV : OWN
49 “Good” or “ill” thing : OMEN
51 Shot in the dark : STAB
52 Sub : HERO
53 “Fantasy Focus” podcast airer : ESPN
54 Lump near a lash : STYE
55 On point : APT
56 The smallest one is called a minimus : TOE
58 Who joins Gryffindor’s Quidditch team in “Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix” : RON
59 Good people to know : INS

15 thoughts on “0925-20 NY Times Crossword 25 Sep 20, Friday”

  1. 40:43 Anybody want to take a guess how long it took me to change “rage” to “race”? 🙁 With all the other words I was unfamiliar with, that’s the one that got me….

  2. 12:09, no errors. Surprisingly easy (with emphasis on that little word “surprisingly” … 😜). Tried to put “INTO THIN AIR” before “INTO THE NIGHT”.

  3. 19:11. Better time than yesterday. Unheard of for me. It helped a lot that I knew most of the long entries. Probably my best Friday effort. I probably pay for that tomorrow.

  4. 20:42 including about 3 minutes looking for several fat fingers. Had TEE before HEE (getting HEE led to Phobia and then working out the NW corner); THETIDE before CURRENT (but fixing that led to some fat fingers); RAGE (being on a “Tear”) before RACE, which gave me the jingle.

    Started slowly, but good guesses at a couple of the long answers (except 17A, which came at the end) helped it go quickly thereafter.

  5. 22:33 including an alphabet run at ACTAEON/OWN to get the “O” and messing up and putting sITED/AsTAEON. So I screwed up ACTAEON twice – one of those gray areas as to how many errors that is. In effect, how many words were wrong vs how many letters were wrong.

    In case anyone doesn’t recognize 44A, it’s from “Monty Python and the Holy Grail”. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZmInkxbvlCs

    Best –

  6. Well, I did ok but my time doesn’t come close to some of these great times.. Maybe I dally too much.. Had a couple of miscues though. 47D had GWN instead of OWN. then had MOD for 25D instead of BOD…
    The reference brought back memories of the C-Rations. They used to put cigarettes in them. They came in like 4 cigarettes to a pack. I didn’t smoke but I saved mine because they were worth their weight in gold.. You know what a smoker would give for a cigarette after several days without??? For me, I traded for canned fruit cocktail.. Greatest morale booster after eating canned beans for what seemed like an eternity..

  7. Missed 23A via MOD/SCALI/REDMEIN. Good Friday puzzle even though I came up short. After some thought I gave 4D a thumbs-up
    and a smile.

  8. 1:23:57 in what seemed like 3 hours with 6 errors…there was nothing about this one that I enjoyed for even one minute.
    You guys with your great times the more power to you.
    Stay safe😀
    Go Ravens

  9. 13:54, no errors. Very rare that I make it through a puzzle with zero erasures, can’t remember that ever happening on a Friday. ACTAEON was filled entirely by crosses. Add me to the list who think that OOP was a horrible answer. Have NEVER heard of an alley oop referred to as an OOP. OOP’s are errors, not highlights.

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